BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — When’s the last time you bought a lottery ticket?

We see plenty of Take 5 winners pop up around the area, and it turns out that New York spends the second-most per capita on lottery tickets, a new study from LendingTree reveals.

That number, according to LendingTree, is $455.93 per capita. The states that follow New York are in the same ballpark:

  • 3. Rhode Island – $429.88
  • 4. Georgia – $429.51
  • 5. Michigan – $408.51

But the number one state goes far beyond these. Massachusetts, at $805.30, spends the most per capita on lottery games.

“That’s 77 percent more than the amount residents spent in New York and 87 percent more than the amount residents spent in Rhode Island,” LendingTree said.

These stats come from LendingTree’s analysis of the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2020 Annual Survey of State Government Finance.

So, where do people feel less inclined to try their luck at the lottery? You’ll have to go further west to find them. LendingTree says North Dakota is number 50 on the list, spending $32.24 per capita. Ahead of them are Wyoming at $40.97 and Montana at $58.62.

“Marketing may play a role in the discrepancy between the top and bottom states,” LendingTree said. “Massachusetts allocated $4.5 million in 2022 to advertising its lottery services — and state commissioners want that budget to more than double to $10 million in 2023. Comparatively, North Dakota allocated nearly $1.1 million to its marketing budget between 2019 and 2021.”

LendingTree says personal finances may have played a factor in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island’s rankings, too, with all three having median household incomes above the U.S. median. For reference, New York’s median household income between 2017 and 2021 was $75,157, according to U.S. Census data.

Massachusetts seems to have all the luck when it comes to prize winnings. The analysis shows that those who played the lottery in that state “got back 70 cents in lottery prize money for every dollar they spent in 2020.”

New York seems to have only received back a little over half of what was spent, at 52 cents per dollar spent. The Empire State ranked 39th on this list.

See the full study by clicking/tapping here.

Latest Posts

Evan Anstey is an Associated Press Award, JANY Award and Emmy-nominated digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.